He was afterwards brevetted captain for conduct in the capture of Mexico
, and his commission was dated back to that period.
Upon his return, his company was stationed at West Point
, and he remained there with them till June, 1851, much of the time in command.
His leisure hours were spent in studies connected with his profession.
Among other things, he prepared an elaborate lecture upon the campaign of Napoleon
in 1812, which was read before a literary society.
Of this discourse he thus speaks in a letter to his sister-in-law :--“Well, it is over at last; and glad I am of it. I read the last part of my Napoleon
paper last night.
I have been working hard at it ever since my return, and the ink was hardly dry on the last part when it was read.
The affair amounted to one hundred and eleven pages in all; and they compliment me by saying that it gave a clear explanation of the campaign: so I am contented.
I hardly know, but I have an indefinite idea that we have had fine weather since I returned.
I have some indistinct ideas of sunshine, and some of rain; but I have been so intently occupied with the one subject that I have thought of but little else.
Now I must go to work with my company.
I've enough to do to occupy half a dozen persons for a while; but I rather think I can get through it. I have had no time to read any of Schiller
; but now I will go at it. I have some thought of writing a paper on the Thirty Years War for our club.”
His familiar letters breathe a strong desire for a more stirring and active life than that he was now